05/28/2016 Donnie Nietes vs. Raul Garcia

Date:   Saturday, May 28, 2016


Location:   University of St. La Salle Coliseum, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, Philippines

Promoter:   ALA Promotions / Michael D. Aldeguer




Results:  The WBO Jr. Flyweight Champion Donnie Nietes retained the title against Raul Garcia by KO in the fifth round.


Donnie Nietes expects challenger Raul Garcia to suffer same fate as twin brother Ramon

nietes-garcia-GR-052716 Donnie Nietes vows not to disappoint provincemates in his defense of his WBO title against Mexican Raul Garcia. Photo by:  Gerry Ramos

BACOLOD CITY – Donnie Nietes sees twin brothers Raul and Ramon Garcia as almost the same fighters. And it goes without saying he expects the same result for him when he stakes his World Boxing Organization (WBO) light-flyweight crown on the line.

The beloved son of Negros Occidental vowed not to disappoint against the cocky Raul Garcia in their 12-round title match at the La Salle Coliseum on Saturday night, almost five years since he beat the Mexican challenger’s sibling via a unanimous decision in exactly the same fight venue.

And unlike that 2011 championship bout in which Nietes, now 33, came close to going down in the last few rounds after losing steam in the stretch, he said the same won’t happen to him this time around.

“Grabe ang strength and conditioning na ginawa namin,” admitted Nietes after some carbo oading following the official weigh-in on Friday afternoon for Pinoy Pride 36: A Legend in the Making at the Robinson’s Place here.

“Dati kinakapos ang stamina ko. Before parang five or six rounds lang tayo. Ngayon, pinag-aralan talaga namin paano makaabot ng 12 rounds (yung stamina ko),” said the longest reigning Filipino world champion of all time, who tipped the scale at exactly 108-lbs.

That’s exactly what happened to him against Ramon Garcia Hirales, when he had to rely on heart and sheer will to survive the late onslaught by the Mexican to win his second world title which he holds until today.

Raul was at ringside that same night, and believes his brother did enough to win the fight.

“He remembers the fight very well. It was a very close fight, and he believes his brother should have won by one or two points, but the judges gave it to Nietes,” said one of Raul’s cornermen.

“Revenge is very much on his mind. Revenge for the honor of his brother and the honor of the country,” he added of the challenger, who also came in at 108 lbs for the main event of the boxing card put up by ALA Promotions and ABS-CBN Sports.

Raul trained almost five months for a shot at another world title in a second weight division, establishing his camp in a desert near Mexico City located 3,000 miles above sea level.

In all, the former WBO minimumweight champion (36-3-1, 22 KOs) worked 160 rounds of sparring to prepare for the bout.

“There’s no one who’s got balls than the Mexican fighters. if Donnie stays in the middle and fights like a man, he’s gonna knock him out,” said Garcia’s interpreter. “But Donnie will fight and run. So he’s ready for both, whether he runs or he stays in front of me.”

Nietes said fighting style wise, Raul and Ramon are just the same.

“I think same lang sila, lookalike and style,” said the champion (37-1-4, 21 KOs), who’s making the ninth defense of his title.

The pride of the municipality of Murcia, said he’ll be very patient this time unlike during his fight with Ramon Garcia before.

“Ang mind-set ko talaga huwag mag-madali, relax lang tayo. Maging patient and maghanap ng paraan paano tayo manalo,” he said.

Once inside the ring, though, Raul said Nietes will realize he’s a different animal than his brother.

“My style and my brother is different,” said Garcia. “I’m very confident I’m gonna come out the winner.”

In the main undercard, Arthur Villanueva and Mexican Juan Jimenez both made weight for their WBO Asia-Pacific bantamweight championship fight. Villanueva tipped in at 117.5 lbs., while Jimenez was at 118 lbs.

Milan Melindo however, came in four lbs. over the weight limit for his flyweight match against another Mexican in Maximino Flores. The native of Cagayan de Oro City weighed 114 lbs. to the 110 of Flores, although camps of both fighters agreed to go on with the fight using bigger gloves, and possibly, a corresponding fine on Melindo.



HOME is where the heart is for Donnie Nietes when he puts his World Boxing Organization (WBO) light-flyweight title on the line later this month.

The 33-year-old Filipino will be fighting in front of his provincemates on May 28 at La Salle Coliseum in Bacolod as the featured main event in the 36th edition of Pinoy Pride: A Legend in the Making.

It will be the first bout of Nietes in Negros Occidental since 2011 when he first wrested the 108-lb. title belt with a unanimous decision win over Ramon Garcia Hirales.

“Sobrang excited na,” said the proud son of Murcia, Negros Occidental about his impending homecoming just three weeks from now.

Incidentally, Nietes will be up against Raul ‘Rayito’ Garcia, the twin brother of Ramon Garcia.

Garcia, from Baja, California Sur, Mexico, packs a wallop as the 33-year-old southpaw challenger carries a 38-3-1 record, including 23 by KOs.

Currently on a five-fight win streak, Garcia has a common opponent with Nietes in Moises Fuentes to whom the Mexican lost by split decision in 2011. In contrast, the Filipino champion twice defeated Fuentes via a majority decision (Waterfront Hotel in Cebu, 2013) and by technical knockout (Mall of Asia, 2014).

“Pero siyempre hindi rin tayo basta mag-kumpiyansa,” said Nietes on Wednesday when he faced a select group of mediamen over lunch courtesy of ALA Promotions and ABS-CBN Sports.

Nietes co-trainer Edwin Villamor said the camp of the longest-reigning Filipino world champion ever has repeatedly watched the tape of the Fuentes-Garcia bout.

“Magandang laban, parehong Mexicano,” said the brother of ALA boxing gym head trainer Edito Villamor. “Pero dun pa lang, may idea na kami kung paano siya atakihin.”

Nietes admitted being still 10 pounds over the limit, but sees no problem shedding off the excess weight.

He is already in the final phase of his training, having gone 12 rounds in sparring on Tuesday against heavier sparmates.

The champion’s camp will be in Manila until Saturday when they fly back to Cebu and resume training at the ALA boxing gym.

Nietes plans to be in Bacolod at least two weeks before the 12-round match.

The WBO title holder last fought in October of 2015 when he retained his title belt with a unanimous decision win over Juan Alejo in his first ever U.S. bout held at the StarHub Center in Carson, California.


Donnie Nietes vs. Raul Garcia Agreement is Getting Closer


By Ronnie Nathanielsz –

Mexican promoter Oswaldo Kuchle has informed BoxingScene.com/The Standard that he has “released Raul Garcia to fight Donnie Nietes, the WBO light flyweight champion and the longest reigning Filipino world champion” following the willingness of Zanfer Promotions Fernando Beltran to postpone the mandatory challenge of Moises Fuentes against Nietes for a more lucrative showdown at the StubHub Center in Carson City, California on September 24.

ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer told The Standard that he first wants to “agree on what is going to be out there for Fuentes before we can agree on the Garcia fight.”

He said “if we fight Garcia in May we need to discuss the mandatory with Fuentes in September” before confirming the Nietes title defense against Raul Garcia, twin brother of Ramon  Garcia Hirales from whom Nietes won the title by a unanimous twelve round decision at the University of St. La Salle Coliseum in Bacolod City on October 8, 2011.

Aldeguer told us that fight fans in Bacolod were clamoring for Nietes to return to his hometown of Murcia which is on the outskirts of Bacolod. He said “people wanted the fight after all the accomplishments of Donnie.”

If the fight doesn’t take place in Bacolod Aldeguer said the alternative would be the Waterfront Hotel and Casino in Cebu.

Aldeguer said Fernando Beltran said he had no objections to the proposal but hadn’t yet formally agreed since they also have to secure the approval of the World Boxing Organization president Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel who had earlier directed Nietes to face Fuentes in a   mandatory title defense which would be their third fight after Nietes demolished Fuentes on May 10, 2014, dropping him three times in the 9th  round for a rousing knockout victory at
the Mall of Asia Arena along Manila Bay.

In suggesting that the Nietes-Fuentes mandatory be held in the US, Aldeguer was looking at a big fight with a wider American audience. However, he said if the proposal was disallowed by the WBC president, Nietes was ready to face Fuentes even in Mexico where he defended his minimum weight title successfully on several occasions against  Mexican opponents in their own hometowns.

The 32 year old southpaw Raul “Rayito” Garcia who is ranked No. 11 by the WBO  has a record of 36-3-1 with 22 knockouts. On June 14, 2008, he won the title from  Filipino IBF Minimumweight champion Florante Condes in  a somewhat controversial 12 round split decision after being dropped by Condes in the final round,  in Garcia’s hometown of La Paz, Mexico.

Garcia defended his IBF title four times. He lost the IBF mini flyweight title against South African Nkosinathi Joyi on 26 March 2010 by a unanimous decision.

After losing his IBF title, Garcia went on to win the WBO interim minimumweight title on October 30, 2010 by a split decision against Luis dela Rosa. He was scheduled to face Donnie Nietes on March 12, 2011 for the full championship, however, just two weeks prior to the fight date, Nietes announced that he would be vacating his world title and moving up in weight which resulted in “Rayito” Garcia being elevated to full champion.

On May 30, 2011, he successfully defended the title for the first time by third round TKO against Filipino Rommel Asenjo. Garcia and his brother Ramón made history that on this night when they became the first set of twin brothers to win world title fights on the same card.


10/17/2015 Donnie Nietes vs. Juan Alejo

Date:  Saturday – October 17, 2015


Location: StubHub Center, Carson, California, USA

Promoter:  ALA Promotions / Michael D. Aldeguer

Supervisor:  Richard De Cuir

Referee:  Raul Caiz Jr.,

Judges:  Lou Moret (120-108); Pat Russell (119-109); Marshall Walker (119-109)

Results:  The Champion Donnie Nietes retained his WBO Junior Flyweight title against Juan Alejo by Unanimous Decision (120-108, 119-109, 119-109).


Donnie Nietes wins a superfight

FullSizeRender Donnie Nietes. Photo by Roy Luarca/INQUIRER –

IT WAS no ordinary boxing bout Donnie Nietes won in retaining his WBO junior flyweight crown in Cebu City on Saturday.

When he got tagged with a hard shot to the head in the 10th round, Nietes tarried and took a deep breath. He appeared on the verge of exhaustion.

How he moved back into the fray, to gamble on an injured hand in the 11th before dominating the 12th round, is the story of a quiet and unassuming Filipino champion gallantly retaining the Philippines’ lone remaining world boxing crown.

Michael Aldeguer, top man at ALA Promotions, said on the eve of the championship bout that expectations were bound to be surpassed, going by the quality of the competition.

After the tight tactical battle, which saw leads shifting sharply, it won’t be an exaggeration to say that they ended up serving what could qualify as a superfight.

The bout could have gone either way until Nietes, who injured his right hand in the sixth round, put up a masterful display of sharpness, courage and composure.

* * *

Of course, the fight did not bring with it monumental purses. That could be a prerequisite for a bout that comes to be called a candidate superbout.

It was, however, rich in great exchanges, full of suspense, a real thriller.

What it lacked in dollar decimals, it more than made up in memorable combat.

* * *

Losing mandatory challenger Francisco Rodriguez, his nose busted and bleeding, predictably protested and cried he should have gotten the decision.

Filipino cycling legend Jesus Garcia Jr., a Nietes die-hard, believed a rematch could prove similarly thrilling.

He, however, laughed off the scores of the second and third judges who gave Nietes final leads of 10 and eight points,  thereby making it appear there was a mismatch. Garcia claimed the 115-113 score submitted by the first judge was apt.

* * *

For the record, the taller, ever-charging Rodriguez gave Nietes some tough time with his swarming offensive.

It was just too bad that, unlike Nietes, he lacked necessary defensive skills.

By the way, there was WBO president Paco Valcarcel presiding gleefully over the awarding of belts.

He sure was never remiss in claiming before the championship that Nietes, who always comes out to fight, is a future Hall-of-Famer.


07/11/2015 Donnie Nietes vs. Francisco Rodriguez Jr.

Date:   Saturday,  July 11, 2015


Location:  Cebu City Waterfront Hotel & Casino, Barangay Lahug, Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines

Promoter:  ALA Promotions / Michael D. Aldeguer

Supervisor:  Francisco Valcarcel, Esq.

Referee:  Russell Mora

Judges:  Robert Hecko  (119-109);  Benoit Roussel  (115-113);  Lisa Giampa  (118-110)

Results:   The WBO Jr. Flyweight champion Donnie Nietes retained the crown against Francisco Rodriguez Jr. by Unanimous Decision.

TV:  Philippines ABS-CBN   Channel 2

Donnie Nietes vs. Francisco Rodriguez: Fight Time, Date, Live Stream and TV Info

CJdpIWZUcAIWmog  By:  Nate Loop –

If there’s one thing Filipino boxing star Donnie “Ahas” Nietes (35-1-4, 21 KOs) knows how to do, it’s put on a show in front of his adoring fans in his home country.

Nietes has never lost fighting in the Philippines, and he will put that perfect record to the test on Saturday when he defends his WBO world light flyweight title against Francisco “Titanium” Rodriguez Jr. (17-2-1, 11 KOs) in a scheduled 12-round bout to headline Pinoy Pride 31.

The bout will serve as Nietes’ seventh defense of the WBO title. He is the longest-reigning Filipino world titleholder ever, per RingTV.com’s Anson Wainwright.

The venue is the Cebu City Waterfront Hotel and Casino in Cebu City, Philippines. Nietes has fought five times in his career at this venue, most recently a seventh-round retirement win over Carlos Velarde in November 2014.

Rodriguez is an exciting young scrapper and should prove to be tough matchup for the battle-tested Nietes. This bout will be the 21-year-old’s second in Cebu City; he’ll no doubt face a hostile crowd loudly backing its homegrown star.

Here’s a look at the viewing info, followed by a quick preview of the carnage to come.

Nietes vs. Rodriguez Fight Info

Date: Saturday, July 11

TV: ABS-CBN (Philippines), BeIN Sports Espanol (per ESPN’s Dan Rafael)

Time: 12 a.m. ET on BeIN Sports Espanol (tape delay)

Live Stream:  BelN Sports Connect (subscription required)

Fight Preview

Last we saw Nietes in the squared circle, he was busy working over Gilberto Parra in the famed Smart Araneta Coliseum, knocking him down in the eighth round and forcing a retirement in the ninth. It’s been quite some time since Nietes has even seen the scorecards in a bout.

He’s earned stoppages in five of his last six matches, with only Moises Fuentes surviving 12 rounds of Nietes’ sharp counterpunching to scrape out a mixed-decision draw in March 2013 (for the record, Nietes knocked him out just over a year later).

Even on the wrong side of 30, Nietes has shown little sign of slowing down. Ahas certainly still has his bite.

That said, the drive and hunger of a young boxer have toppled an elder opponent many times before. Rodriguez’s record shows he is no slouch, as he quickly worked his way up the ranks in the strawweight/minimumweight division, unifying the WBO and IBF world belts in that class against Katsunari Takayama in August 2014.

BoxingScene.com’s Cliff Rold noted Rodriguez’s bouts are capable of delighting fight fans:

“Matched with Japanese veteran Katsunari Tayakama, Rodriguez had a chance to add the IBF belt to his mantle in a rare 105 lb. unification title. The action was breathless and breathtaking, so thrilling that the great Julio Cesar Chavez rose from his position as a television announcer to cheer for both en in the final round as they let loose well over 100 punches apiece.”

With an opponent like that, it’s little wonder that Nietes’ staff is saying all the right things in the buildup to this bout.

“He [Nietes] is faster, stronger and wiser than his previous bouts, but it doesn’t mean that we are counting Rodriguez out. We know that he prepared very well in this fight because he is very determined to be a world champion too,” said trainer Edito Villamor, per Josef T. Ramos of the Manila Times.

Nietes was still putting time in at the gym as of Thursday, per Rappler.com’s Ryan Songalia:

Nietes will have to rely on every ounce of his experience and guile in the ring to outwit and outhit Rodriguez. Although the latter is moving up in weight class and will be fighting in front of an unfriendly crowd, there isn’t much to suggest that the occasion will faze him.

He’s already fought and won at this location and knows from his strawweight days what it’s like to be a champion. Nietes has but a half-inch reach advantage—65.5″ to 65″, per BoxRec—and both pugilists fight orthodox. This one will likely see Rodriguez trying to push the boxer 12 years his elder early on, testing his stamina.

If Nietes can pace out the fight properly, he should teach Rodriguez a lesson or two in the later rounds. It could be a close bout, one that should provide plenty of eye-popping moments for boxing fans.

Nietes is probably overlooked in the United States and Europe, seeing as his biggest bouts aren’t televised on major outlets and he’s almost always fighting in the Philippines, but as he told Wainwright  after his win over Parra back in March: “There is more to Filipino boxing than Manny Pacquiao.”

Ring Magazine ranks him as the best boxer in the light flyweight ranks. Rodriguez, new to the class, is already 10th in Ring’s estimation. Nietes has done more than enough to justify the praise. Another win over a determined young scrapper would only serve to bolster his already ironclad legacy in Filipino boxing.

Rodriguez might stand to benefit more than Nietes on a global scale should he win. He can take a newfound title back to Mexico and find a host of challengers waiting for him. At his age, reaching the mountaintop in two weight classes would make him quite the draw, even outside of his native country.



Nietes will prevail in Pinoy Pride 31 – Monico


Nietes_Monico.300w  By Jerome S. Galunan Jr. –

BACOLOD CITY, Philippine – Finally, the much awaited face-off between the reigning World Boxing Organization (WBO) and Ring magazine junior flyweight champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes (35-4-1, 21KOs) and Mexican challenger and former unified WBO/International Boxing Federation (IBF) minimumweight world champ Francisco Rodriguez, Jr. (17-2-1,11KO’s) will be realized today a both fighters set to meet in today’s press conference for the Pinoy Pride 31: Clash of World Champions in Cebu City.

Nietes, who hailed from Bacolod and Murcia and also the longest reigning Filipino champion, in a report said that he is looking forward to avenge the loss of his friend, stablemate and fellow Negrense Merlito “Tiger” Sabillo – who lost to Rodriguez last year.

The erstwhile WBO mnimumweight champion Sabillo surrendered his belt to Rodriguez after downed in the 10th round in their title fight in Mexico.

Nietes has been in tough training in ALA gym in Cebu since April to prepare for his face-off with Rodriguez on Saturday, July 11, at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.

ALA gym’s lead trainer Edmund Villamor has stressed that Nietes has the edge over the Mexican when the bell rings.

“Donnie (Nietes) is more experienced than Rodriguez. He has also an edge in skills, speed and power. And, most importantly has the home court advantage,” Villamor said.

In any sport, home court is always an advantage in which gave an athlete more confidence in fighting before his home crowd. However, this doesn’t apply that much to Nietes as he is also undefeated in all his fights in Mexico – beating down his opponents despite the pressure from the home fans.

But, Villamor reiterated that they won’t be that complacent against Rodriguez as he is a former champion who has an impressive record against Filipino fighters.

Bacolod City Mayor Monico Puentevella yesterday said that he believes that Nietes will prevail in this fight. “I know Donnie [Nietes] will prevail in this match because he possesses the proper motivation and guidance under my former [basketball] coach, Antonio’Bidoy’ Aldeguer. And, Donnie has the heart and the will to win,” Puentevella said.

Murcia town Mayor Andrew Montelibano also foresees similar result on the Nietes-Rodriguez face-off. “With the kind of conditioning and training he is in, I believe Donnie [Nietes] will retain his title. I am in contact with him personally and I can see he is more ready than ever,” Montelibano said.

Also featured in Pinoy Pride 31 is co-main event Mark “Magnifico” Magsayo alongside another promising young prospect Kevin Jake Cataraja.

The undefeated Magsayo (10-0) will face Mexican Rafael Reyes (16-4) for the vacant IBF Youth featherweight title while, Cataraja meets Indonesian Ardi Tefa for a 6-round clash.


03/28/2015 Donnie Nietes vs. Gilberto Parra

Date:  Saturday – March 28, 2015


Location:   Araneta Coliseum, Barangay Cubao, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines

Promoter:    ALA Promotions / Michael D. Aldeguer

Supervisor:  Leon Panoncillo, Jr.

Referee:   Jack Reiss

Judges:   Takeo Harada (JPN), William Lerch (OH),  Max DeLuca (CA)

Results:   Nietes won a twelve rounds bout over Gilberto Parra after he retired in the ninth round on Mar. 28, 2015.


Nietes ready to rumble against Mexican


By:  Abac Cordero –

MANILA, Philippines – Reigning WBO light-flyweight champion Donnie Nietes said he’s ready for anything that his Mexican opponent will bring to the table.

“Whatever he does, I’m ready for it,” the longest-reigning Filipino world champion said in anticipation of Saturday’s fight at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Nietes is scheduled to climb the ring against Gilberto Parra and he’s out to stretch his amazing run of 23 straight wins in over 11 years.

He has not lost a fight since September of 2004 when he faced an Indonesian opponent who climbed the ring six pounds over the weight limit.

Nietes recently surpassed the record of the great Gabriel “Flash” Elorde as the longest-reigning Pinoy world champion at seven years and three months.

Edmond Villamor also told The STAR that based on their studies, Parra has the tendency to shift from being a slugger to a boxer.

“Parra carries both styles,” said Villamor in Filipino.

“Minsan pumapasok pero minsan boxer at nag-aabang lang,” he said, adding that Nietes had done everything in training.

Nietes went over a hundred rounds in sparring since January, just enough for him to declare that he’s “100 percent ready” for the fight.

The pride of ALA Boxing Promotions will bring with him a long and impressive record of 34 wins, four draws and a single loss (with 20 knockouts).

He said a knockout will come if Parra comes in.

“If he moves in, I may knock him out,” said Nietes.

But it’s easier said than done because Parra is a knockout artist himself. Of his 19 wins and two defeats, 17 came by knockout.

“We know the history of Nietes with Mexican fighters, and I admire him. But everything has an ending, and the end will come for Nietes on Saturday,” said the Mexican.

“He has good record. But we were able to go over his style,” said Nietes, who will share the spotlight with Nonito Donaire in this Pinoy Pride presentation.

Donaire is out to bounce back from a loss to Nicholas Walters last October, and had gone down to 122 pounds.

The five-division world champion takes on Brazilian William Prado, seeking a victory and perhaps another shot at the super-bantamweight crown.

“Everything is great. I’m doing good,” he said.




By Rene Bonsubre, Jr. –

MANILA – WBO junior flyweight champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes was presented the Ring magazine lineal world title belt by the publication’s correspondent Anson Wainwright during the final press conference for PINOY PRIDE 30: D-Day at the Solaire Resort and Casino.

The magazine known as the “Bible of Boxing” recognized Nietes as the world champion in the 108 lb division when he stopped Moises Fuentes of Mexico in nine rounds in their rematch at the Mall of Asia Arena last May 10,2014.

He has since defended his title again by seventh round TKO against another Mexican, Carlos Velarde in Cebu City. Nietes(34W-1L-4D,20KO’s) is due for another Mexican opponent Gilberto Parra (19-2,17KO’s), this Saturday at the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

The 32 year old Nietes also broke the 7 year 3 month barrier set by the great Flash Elorde at the start of 2105. In this span where he reigned at minimumweight from 2007 to 2010 before moving up to win a title at junior flyweight, Nietes has beaten ten Mexican opponents.

But his latest challenger Parra is unfazed. Despite the fact that he was not the first reported opponent for Nietes – it was another Mexican fighter, Luis Ceja – Parra stated that he has trained adequately for this title fight.

Nietes was also not bothered by the change in opponents. During the presscon he said that he has seen the tapes of Parra and has prepared for his power right hand. Nietes is confident that his opponent will fall.

Set to appear on this card is multi-division champ Nonito “The Filipino Flash’ Donaire (33-3,21KO’s), who will be going for the NABF super bantamweight title against Brazilian William Prado (22-4-1,15KO’s).

Nietes said that it is a big honor to be fighting in a card with a superstar like Donaire.

Also set to appear at the Big Dome this Saturday are “Prince’ Albert Pagara, who will defend his IBF Inter-continental 122lb division title against Mexican Rodolfo Hernandez, Ryo Akaho of Japan and Prosper Ankrah of Ghana for the WBO International bantamweight title, AJ ‘Bazooka’ Banal will be pitted against Junior Bahawa of Indonesia (8 rounds), Joepher Montano of Bacolod City vs Tyson Maher of Australia (4 rounds), Jeson Umbal vs Eric Panza (8 rounds) and Ralph Lulu vs Gerry Patenio (4 rounds).




Credit:  Photo by Archie Alipalo –

By Ronnie Nathanielsz –

There’s been another change in the opponent of WBO light flyweight champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes, the longest reigning Filipino world champion who is scheduled to defend his title at the classy Mall of Asia Arena on March 28 in a blockbuster card that will also feature the comeback fight of five division champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire.

While Nietes was preparing to defend his title against Mexico’s Luis Ceja, the WBO Championship Committee chairman Luis Batista Salas on January 29 informed ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer and Zanfer Promotions Fernando Beltran that Nietes had to face mandatory challenger Francisco Rodriguez Jr also of Mexico.

The WBO official notified both parties that they were given 30 days to negotiate an agreement and if they failed to do so a Purse Bid would be called within ten days.

Aldeguer consulted Nietes and his team and said they were willing to face Rodriguez although he suggested that Nietes be allowed to fight Ceja as originally planned on March 28 and face Rodriguez in July.

On Monday, Aldeguer learned that Rodriguez “wasn’t ready to fight on March 28” and that Nietes will now defend his title against Gilberto Parra who is ranked No. 13 and Nietes will fight Rodriguez in a mandatory title defense on July 4.

Aldeguer informed the Manila Standard/Viva Sports “we have not signed the contract as yet but hopefully we should get it done by tomorrow (Wednesday).”

The merry-go-round once again highlights the difficulty Filipino promoters have in dealing with Zanfer while it also raises the question as to why the WBO insisted on a mandatory title defense when the challenger was not ready.

Parra has an impressive record of 17 knockouts in 19 wins with one of his losses suffered at the hands of Martin Tecuapetla who scored a lopsided ten round decision on November 2, 2013.

Tecuaptela is the same fighter who dropped a ten round majority decision against Milan Melindo in a clash for the WBO International title on May 10, 2014.

In his last fight on February 14 this year, Parra was cut on his left eye in the 2nd round of a scheduled ten round bout against Maximino Flores with the bout declared a “no contest.”


Nietes, Donaire head elite honor roll


Donnie Nietes and Nonito Donaire Jr. will be enshrined into the Elorde Boxing Hall of Fame for being Elorde Boxers of the Year for seven consecutive years since 2008 during the 15th Gabriel “Flash” Elorde Memorial Boxing Awards and Banquet of Champions on March 25 at Manila Hotel.

Nietes , the current WBO light flyweight world champion, has given the Philippines pride and honor as WBO minimumweight champion (2008), WBO strawweight titlist (2009) and IBF light flyweight champion from 2010 to 2014.

Donaire also became the toast of pro boxing as IBF flyweight (2008-2010), WBC and WBO bantamweight (2011), WBO and IBF super bantamweight (2012) and WBO super bantamweight (2013-14) world champion.

The Elorde Hall of Fame is Philippine pro boxing’s highest honor accorded only to seven-time Boxer of the Year awardees. The first Hall of Fame honoree was Manny Pacquiao in 2008.

“We use seven consecutive years as the yardstick since Bai Elorde was world junior lightweight champion for seven consecutive years from 1960-to 1967,” said Laura Elorde, wife of the boxing great.

Donnie Nietes to face Luis Ceja on March 28


MANILA, Philippines – RING and WBO  junior flyweight champion Donnie Nietes will defend his titles against Luis Ceja on March 28 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Philippines, Nietes’ promoter told RingTV.com.

Nietes (34-1-4, 20 knockouts) of Bacolod City, Philippines, has made six defenses of the WBO belt since moving up in weight in 2011, and knocked out Moises Fuentes in May of 2014 to gain lineal recognition.

Ceja (26-5-3, 21 knockouts) of Tlalnepantla, Mexico, has won two straight after a period between 2012 and 2014 where he lost four of his six bouts. Despite Ceja’s inconsistencies, Nietes’ promoter Michael Aldegeur of ALA Boxing feels the 24-year-old is a worthy challenger for the 32-year-old champion.

“We got the contract yesterday (Saturday) so that’s confirmed already,” said Aldegeur. “We’ve heard a lot about [Ceja], he can punch. I think it’s something that we feel would be a good fight for Donnie. He’s a Mexican and a lot of people want to watch a Mexican and a Filipino fighting.”

The bout would be a final voluntary defense before Nietes faces former WBO strawweight titleholder Francisco Rodriguez Jr. in a mandatory defense. Rodriguez (17-2-1, 11 KOs) avenged an earlier draw with Filipino boxer Jomar Fajardo over the weekend, dropping him once en route to a unanimous decision.

Aldegeur says a fight between Nietes and Rodriguez could take place in June, with negotiations likely to begin this coming week.

Also appearing on the card will be former four-division champion Nonito Donaire, who will be returning to the ring for the first time since his knockout loss to Nicholas Walters. Aldegeur says “we have some names coming up” but no opponent has been settled upon.

The fight will be Donaire’s first in his country of birth since 2009, when he knocked out Raul Martinez in four rounds.



Date:  Saturday, November 15, 2014


Location:  Cebu City Waterfront Hotel & Casino, Barangay Lahug, Cebu City, Phillipines

Promoter:   ALA Promotions / Michael D. Aldeguer

Supervisor:   Leon Panoncillo

Referee:   Robert Byrd

Judges:  Rose M. Lacend; Salven Lugumbay; Masakazu Murase

Results:   The WBO Jr. Flyweight Champion Donnie Nietes successfully defended the title stopping Carlos Velarde  by KO in the seventh round.

TV:  Phillipines ABS-CBN Channel 2

Donnie Nietes: The biggest little man in Philippine boxing

Donnie Nietes may not have the fighting style or gift of gab that make a boxing star, but the understated champion is gaining respect and making history

donnie-nietes-20141114_A4E4A421CE2941B5BD48AA30F70E5EE9Donnie Nietes will make the fifth defense of his WBO junior flyweight title on Saturday against Carlos “Chapito” Velarde. File photo by Jay Directo/AFP

CEBU CITY, Philippines – In a corner of a conference room at the Waterfront Hotel in Cebu City, amid the cacophany of post-press con pleasantries, sits Donnie Nietes. Dressed neatly in a black, two-piece suit, Nietes is in his own world, his mind seemingly a million miles away from the chatter surrounding him.

Unless you were well-versed in the sport of boxing, you’d never suspect that this man was one of the world’s most revered fighters in the the lowest divisions. He’s a reserved person who doesn’t say much, whether it’s in his native Illongo tongue or his limited English. He doesn’t affect the superstar aura of Manny Pacquiao, whose infinite facial expressions keep photographers clicking away with their cameras.

He also won’t end up occupying a spot on the Mount Rushmore of Filipino boxers (those spots are reserved for Pacquiao, Nonito Donaire, Flash Elorde and Pancho Villa), but he could make a case as one of the top ten boxers to come from the Philippines when his career is done.

But for the past seven years, Nietes has quietly reigned over the strawweight (105 pounds) and junior flyweight (108 pounds) divisions, winning world titles with a style that is as subtle and efficient as his personality.

“His personality is not there. He’s not a very charismatic guy,” his promoter Michael Aldegeur of ALA Boxing bluntly stated at Thursday’s press conference. “He’s a quiet guy, he doesn’t talk much. I know that in time the respect will be there. [It hurt that] he came in the era of Nonito Donaire, Manny Pacquiao.”

Now 32, the RING magazine/WBO junior flyweight champion Nietes (33-1-4, 19 knockouts) from Bacolod City, Philippines prepares to face Mexican challenger Carlos Velarde (26-3-1, 14 KOs) at the Waterfront this Saturday, November 15.

The 24-year-old “Chapito” Velarde of Culiacan, Mexico has won three straight since losing a thrilling title challenge to Ryo Miyazaki in five rounds in May of 2013. Nietes will be making his fifth – and possibly final – title defense at 108 pounds.

If Nietes can’t get the attention of the public with his verbal skills or fighting style, he’ll have to do it with historical achievements. Nietes has tentatively planned to move up to 112 pounds – where greater challenges and greater respect reside.

Nietes is one of just eight Filipino boxers to have won world titles in multiple divisions, and he’s hoping to put himself in more exclusive company in a third division.

In particular, Nietes says he wants bouts with IBF/WBO flyweight champion Juan Francisco Estrada of Mexico and RING/WBC flyweight champion Roman Gonzalez of Nicaragua, who have both achieved higher visibility in recent years due to their explosive styles.

Estrada (30-2, 22 KOs) has beaten well-regarded Filipino boxers Brian Viloria, Milan Melindo and Richie Mepranum, while Gonzalez (40-0, 34 KOs) faces ALA boxer Rocky Fuentes on November 22 in Japan.

All of that is contingent upon the outcome of Saturday’s fight, which headlines ALA Boxing’s “Pinoy Pride 28” card.

“We don’t know what Donnie will be like at 112,” said Aldegeur. “He’s been comfortable at 108, it wasn’t an issue for us to say he couldn’t make weight. We just felt there were bigger names out there, Donnie wanted to fight the big names out there.”

(RELATED: Junior flyweight champ Nietes to move up in weight after Velarde defense)

Another option would be for Nietes to stay at 108, where the WBO titleholder from strawweight, Francisco Rodriguez Jr., who will face Filipino journeyman Jomar Fajardo in a non-title ten-round flyweight bout on the undercard.

The 21-year-old Rodriguez of Monterrey, Mexico rose to prominence earlier this year in March, when he stopped previously unbeaten titleholder Merlito Sabillo to win the WBO strawweight title. In another Seven Degrees of Separation twist, Sabillo is also on Saturday’s card, facing Indonesian trial horse Faris Nenggo in his first bout since the loss.

In his next fight, Rodriguez bolstered his credentials when he outslugged Japan’s Katsunari Takayama to annex the IBF 108 pound title as well in what many consider to be Fight of the Year. He was originally scheduled to face Filipino Virgilio Silvano before Fajardo was substituted this week.

Rodriguez could be installed as the mandatory challenger by the WBO should he elect to campaign full time at 108 pounds, which he says is his intention.

Rodriguez made no secret of his desire to face Nietes, standing up on the dais to issue a challenge before declaring that his hotel room was substandard and dancing to “Crazy Little Thing Called Love,” among other things.

“I was the best in strawweight and I believe Donnie Nietes is the best in mini flyweight. I want to fight the best. I believe I can beat him,” stated Rodriguez.

Whether Nietes stays at 108 or 112, performances like his most recent bout, when he knocked out Moises Fuentes in nine rounds in a rematch of their 2013 draw, will help build his popularity in the second half of his career. Nietes has won his last two bouts by knockout – a streak he hadn’t enjoyed since before he won his first world title.

Perhaps he’s realized that he won’t need to do much talking if his fists speak with enough volume.

“I think I’ll get a knockout in this fight,” Nietes said.


Nietes vs. Fuentes: Winner, Scorecard and Analysis


By:  Tim Daniels-

Donnie Nietes retained the WBO Junior flyweight title by earning a ninth-round knockout of Moises Fuentes at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay, Philippines.

After the referee stoppage, the WBO congratulated the Filipino champion on his third straight defense:

Congratulations to Donnie Nietes who stops Moises Fuentes in Rd 9 to retain his Junior Flyweight Championship of the World!

(05/10/2014) Donnie Nietes vs. Moises Fuentes

Date:  Saturday, May 10, 2014

WBO Jr. Flyweight Championship Title Bout

Location:  SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City, Metro Manila, Phillipines

Promoter:  ALA Promotions

Supervisor:  Leon Panoncillo, Jr.

Referee:   Robert  Byrd

Judges:  Waleska Roldan;  Robert  Hoyle;  Fernando  Laguna

Result:   The  Champion Donnie  Nietes retains the WBO Junior Flyweight Title over Moises Fuentes by KO in the 9th round.